For so long the Philippine government has never adopted full freedom and independence. It has always been tied up to the United States of America ever since its birth as a republic in 1946 whence the late Manuel A.Roxas was the first puppet president.
It will be recalled that the US dangled an insidious condition over Roxas’ head as a veritable blackmail for him to append the “Parity Amendment” to the Philippine Constitution. If Roxas did not accede to such imperialist blackmail, the US would have slapped him with the veracity of his well-known collaboration with Japan during the war and thereby compromised his presidency. Sadly Roxas was a weakling, motivated only by ambitions for personal aggrandizement more than the honor and integrity of the nation.
Greatly devastated during the Second World War, thanks to the massive bombings by the Americans purportedly to flash out the enemies in the cities of Manila and Cebu and elsewhere, our country could not but rely on the “munificence” of the US as a puppet state. We had to be content with token economic assistance in exchange for wholesale utilization of our lands and exploitation of our vast supply in mineral ores and other natural resources. The Parity Amendment privileges American citizens with equal rights with Filipinos to explore, exploit and utilize our country’s natural resources renewable after a considerable period of time.
The situation was very far from opening opportunities and giving benefits to Filipinos as mandated by the principle of “parity rights”. The immense inequality in financial and technological capabilities between the two countries favored the US immeasurably, and redounded only to stunted economic growth and underdevelopment on the part of the Philippines.
Concomitant to accommodation of American economic interests was a regime of despicable obeisance of our country’s leadership to the dictates of the US on significant spheres of our socio-political life as a nation. Chief among these was our government’s canine compliance to the establishment of the US Military Bases in Subic and Clark which constituted a stark mockery of Philippine sovereignty. In pursuance of the US imperialist global agenda these military facilities only served as veritable launching pads in their adventures in the Asia-Pacific region. And by that they also serve as magnets to attacks by the enemies of the US in its scramble for hegemony with other superpowers.
Perhaps more depraving Philippine sovereignty than the aforementioned liability factors, these installations during the entire period of their presence in the country served as harbinger of a socio-moral affliction. Wherever they existed there flourished prostitution and human trafficking, smuggling and drug trade, gambling and other decadent social aberrations. They also engendered sexually transmitted diseases as syphilis and gonorrhea and the dreaded “Vietnam rese”. Thanks to our concerned nationalists in the Philippine Senate who deemed it imperative to remove the anomalous ingrowth to our territorial sovereignty, the heroic ”Magnificent 12” led by Senator Jovito Salonga decided to dismantle the US Military Bases on our soil on September 16, 1991.
But a lamentable twist of fate happened! Two treacherous agreements came like thunderbolts!— the VFA (Visiting Forces Agreement) during President Erap Estrada’s time, and the EDCA (Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement) during President Noynoy Aquino’s incumbency— allowed the return of US troops to the country.
US special forces consisting of naval and army troops now occupy the entire country: in Fort Magsaysay in Nueva Ecija, Basa Air Base in Pampanga, Antonio Bautista Air Base in Palawan, Benito Ebuen Air Base in Mactan and in Lumbia Airport in Cagayan de Oro.
American troops and advisers are also secretly stationed inside AFP camps in Cagayan Valley, Bicol. Samar, Panay, Negros and other islands. There are some who have not left Guian Samar since 2013 when they were supposedly conducting “assistance operations” in the aftermath of typhoon Yolanda.
Thousands of US troops regularly dock in different ports in the country for their “rest and recreation” stints that expose our womenfolk to rape and abuses like what happened to Nicole and Laude.
Incidentally, Noynoy Aquino has a lot to account for the Mamasapano Tragedy. He allowed the Americans to direct the PNP Special Forces to act as pawns to advance their “war on terror” in Mindanao. This is a virtual act of treason on the part of the puppet president!
President Duterte’s pronouncements
These past few days President Rodrigo Duterte has issued statements to the effect that it is about time the Philippines adopt an “Independent Foreign Policy”. Such a pronouncement, followed by a verbalized call to pull out all American troops from Mindanao, plus his announcement that the coming Joint Exercises between US and Filipino troops in Central Philippines “would be the last” under his term, is a happy and welcome phenomenon.
Never in the history of Philippine history has a national leader spoken in very clear terms against the violation of our national sovereignty—a historic move for a nation that for decades has known only the “canine devotion” of its leaders to foreign domination. Spoken in a dauntless straightforward manner, Rodrigo’s banner statements are extremely admirable and deserving of the rallying support of the entire nation. Like gusts of a mighty East Wind they underscore a radical standpoint. Their impact is felt variably by those who applaud him with overwhelming support for after all they stand to lose only their chains from misery, and by the faithless who after all are beneficiaries of the unjust status quo and are understandably nervous.
Among the legions who have fought and are continuously fighting for genuine Change—the activists and cadres and supporters of the CPP-NPA-NDFP—the task is to advance to fulfillment the expression of “full sovereignty”. The nation should not be cowed by bullying verbal tirades of the US or any other country. It is good to always remember Vietnam’s history of struggle and glory.
President Duterte’s stance should be a cause for rejoicing for every Filipino. At long last a leader has emerged on the historical landscape that proves to be equal to the demands of the times.